A key, distinctive role in Bibione’s natural heritage is played by the fishing grounds, and Valgrande in particular. It is an area that spans 360 hectares, with fencing to protect the flora and fauna. There has always been a harmonious, respectful relationship between people and the environment here and efforts are made to preserve it by encouraging visitors to take a leisurely, low-impact approach.
Valgrande has always been private property. Thanks to the measures taken by its owners, its form has remained unchanged over the years. But what was Valgrande like before they started managing it? 300 years ago, Valgrande was a vast area of marshland where humans did not tend to set foot. Low-impact action was taken to make the wetlands into a suitable environment for farming fish such as grey mullet, European bass, gilt-head bream and eels. This also created outstanding conditions for wildlife, thanks to which it is now a Special Protection Area (SPA) and a Site of Community Importance (SCI). It has not undergone any major changes since the 17th century and this has helped to establish and preserve a balanced relationship with the surrounding areas.
In Valgrande, you’ll see reed thickets, expanses of water and woods, not to mention a colony of pink flamingos that appear near the lake every June. The pungent smell of wild rocket floats through the air and is joined by mint in the summer.
Poking through the flourishing vegetation, you might see the remains of a Roman villa, complete with a mosaic. It is in an area called “Motteron dei Frati” where the dunes reach up to 11 metres above sea level, making it the highest part of the entire Northern Adriatic coast. In the wetlands, you can go birdwatching, take photographs of unique sights, watch the sunset over the breathtaking landscape in a gently rocking boat, and choose from a number of options for trips in the great outdoors.
There are numerous ways to get around the area at a leisurely pace, including walking, cycling, horse riding and kayaking…
- Mountain biking A ride through the magnificent woods in the wetlands. Admire animals in their natural habitats as you go through ancient holm oak woods and unblemished pine woods, travelling as far as the edge of the lagoon. There’ll be a quick stop for refreshments at an old “Casone” after the trip.
- Kayaking in Bibione lagoon You’ll head towards Porto Baseleghe and go as far as the exit for the sea, before following canals back to the start point. It’s more tiring than the trip to the inland lagoon but still suitable for everyone. There’ll be a quick stop for refreshments at an old “Casone” after the trip.
- Nordic walking It’s possible to take part even if you don’t want to use the poles. You’ll visit “Motteron dei Frati”, some beehives, and an extremely old ant’s nest, while also seeing ponies and goats. You’ll also get a chance to look out over the fishing ponds.
- Nature trails and the Natural Education Centre However you choose to visit the area, you will be accompanied by an expert guide who speaks Italian, German and English. You can follow the nature trails on foot, by bike or on horseback. They are all approximately 10 km long. We also recommend stopping off at the Natural Education Centre, where you’ll find multimedia rooms and a museum.
Visits can be arranged for everyone, including children and elderly or disabled people who have trouble following long paths in the woods. Thanks to the marked trails and our golf carts, everybody can explore the countless wonders of the wetlands.
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